Written by: Nikoya
“Go to school!” they scream once you graduate high school, and maybe even undergraduate school these days.
“Get a job!” they tell you as soon as you get a chance to breathe as an adult.
I can’t help but ask, to the person that endures this talk and does not know what they want to do as a career in life- how does this affect you psychologically? If you have family as hard as a lot of people, the kind where everything you do has to be justified, I’m sure it effects you in some kind of negative light.
I know very few people who have deeply fulfilling careers. Most people I know simply complain about their jobs and their seemingly limited variations of opportunities. Those are the people that I just want to shake and say, “do you realize how powerful you are? You are an intelligent, creative human being, just choose to live that way!”
Yes, we have a choice. We have a choice to live in the dark about our true purpose and life. We have a choice of committing to a career we hate or creating one that we’ll love. We have a choice to listen to the people outside of ourselves versus our own voice on the inside.
Quitters are smarter
If you do not know what fits you for a long term career, there is nothing wrong with actively trying different roles until you learn something about yourself. Trying and quitting is more about choosing to learn more about you versus passively chilling in the corner cubicle rotting away from fear. Why live that life? Stop being afraid to quit; it is best to quit something you don’t like and find something that you can give your best to.
Until you know who you are, it will be hard to find a career that fits you the most. Knowing who we are and choosing to live authentically makes a huge different in our happiness.
Sometimes change means growth. Just because you found one opportunity in your life, doesn’t mean you have to stay in that same opportunity forever. If Steve Jobs had chosen to accept that he was a “bum living in his parents basement” or a “college dropout who could not even afford a stick of deodorant” we would not have so many of the luxuries that we have now. The iPhone changed how the world works and thinks. If he had not quit college and continued down the “expected” path for a privileged 20-something, would he have still made such a huge economical and social impact on the world? Probably not. The cute little apple symbol wouldn’t exist at all, because he felt a diet on nothing but apples made him smell better, giving him the idea that he didn’t need to buy deodorant.
“Work is love made visible. And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms of those who work with joy. For if you bake bread with indifference, you bake a bitter bread that feeds but half man’s hunger. And if you grudge the crushing of the grapes, your grudge distils a poison in the wine. And if you sing though as angels, and love not the singing, you muffle man’s ears to the voices of the day and the voices of the night.” – Khalil Gibran
Live with others in mind
Instead of living your life purely for self, live for others. Ask, “what can I contribute to society?”, “how can I give and create value, without looking for anything in return?” and “how can I make social impact?”
What would you do for free? What are you doing right now that helps others and is valuable to people that also applies as a solution to a common problem?
If you can find the overlap of value creation and what you would do for free because you love it, then you are getting closer to finding a career that truly fits you.
Success comes when you can complete your innate purpose in life. It starts when you can find a problem and solve it. It requires self-mastery.
“But I say to you that when you work you fulfill a part of earth’s furthest dream, assigned to you when that dream was born, And in keeping yourself with labor you are in truth loving life, And to love life through labor is to be intimate with life’s inmost secret.” – Khalil Gibran